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Thread: Making Iaijutsu Focus work

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    Jan 2014

    Default Re: Making Iaijutsu Focus work

    Spoiler: Simple Samurai
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    Star Elf
    Hit-And-Run Fighter 6/Iaijutsu Master 10

    Stats (lvl 1, 32 pb): Str 10/Dex 16/Con 10/Int 14/Wis 6/Cha 18
    All level bumps go to Cha

    Traits: Aggressive/Passionate

    Flaws: Shaky/Vulnerable

    Skills:
    • Fighter levels: Climb, Iaijutsu Focus, Jump, Swim
    • IM levels: Balance/Diplomacy/Iaijutsu Focus/Jump/Sense Motive/Tumble


    Spoiler: Skill Ranks by level
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    Lvl Balance Climb Diplomacy Iaijutsu Focus Jump Sense Motive Swim Tumble
    1 0 4 0 4 4 0 4 0
    2 0 5 0 5 5 0 5 0
    3 0 6 0 6 6 0 6 0
    4 0 7 0 7 7 0 7 0
    5 0 8 0 8 8 0 8 0
    6 0 9 0 9 9 0 9 0
    7 1 9 1 10 10 1 9 1
    8 2 9 2 11 11 2 9 2
    9 3 9 3 12 12 3 9 3
    10 4 9 4 13 13 4 9 4
    11 5 9 5 14 14 5 9 5
    12 6 9 6 15 15 6 9 6
    13 7 9 7 16 16 7 9 7
    14 8 9 8 17 17 8 9 8
    15 9 9 9 18 18 9 9 9
    16 10 9 10 19 19 10 9 10


    Feats:
    • HD 1: Improved Initiative
    • Fighter 1: Weapon Finesse (retrained to "Force Of Personality" at lvl 7)
    • Flaw: Aereni Focus (Iaijutsu Focus)
    • Flaw: Skill Focus (Iaijutsu Focus)
    • Fighter 2: Quick Draw
    • HD 3: Item Familiar (max out Iaijutsu Focus bonus ASAP)
    • Fighter 4: Exotic Weapon Proficiency: Katana
    • HD 6: Warrior's Instinct
    • Fighter 6: Weapon Focus (Katana)
    • HD 9: Improved Critical (Katana)
    • IM 4: Combat Expertise
    • HD 12: Improved Feint
    • HD 15: Surprising Riposte
    • IM 9: Toughness



    Spoiler: Results
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    Alright, so before looking at what this build can do, let's clear up a couple things: up until he gets Iaijutsu Master's special "Weapon Finesse", you're stuck using a rapier.

    Second point of order: other than the weapons mentioned in the previous paragraph, and a "magic katana sheath of unspecified enchantment" that serves as your Item Familiar, I am assuming no items whatsoever. Obviously, this build gets better with items, but the point of this is to show what we're looking at without anything but your sword and sheath.

    Third point of order: below, I list IF bonus and average damage for that bonus; for the damage, I'm rounding to the nearest whole die, rather than giving the exact average.

    Lvl Init IF bonus Standard Atk vs FF Crit DPR DPR (w/ build changes)
    1 +11 +14 (avg +4d6) +4 18-20/x2 5d6+3 (avg 20.5) 5d6+3 (avg 20.5)
    2 +11 +15 (avg +4d6) +5 18-20/x2 5d6+3 (avg 20.5) 5d6+3 (avg 20.5)
    3 +11 +17 (avg +4d6) +6 18-20/x2 5d6+3 (avg 20.5) 5d6+3 (avg 20.5)
    4 +11 +19 (avg +5d6) +7 18-20/x2 6d6+3 (avg 24) 6d6+11 (avg 32)
    5 +11 +21 (avg +5d6) +8 18-20/x2 6d6+3 (avg 24) 6d6+13 (avg 34)
    6 +13 +23 (avg +5d6) +10 18-20/x2 6d6+3 (avg 24) 6d6+21 (avg 42)
    7 +13 +26 (avg +6d6) +11 19-20/x2 1d10+6d6+3 (avg 29.5) 1d10+7d6+24 (avg 54)
    8 +18 +30 (avg +7d6) +12 19-20/x2 1d10+7d6+3 (avg 33) 1d10+8d6+27 (avg 60.5)
    9 +18 +33 (avg +7d6) +13 17-20/x2 1d10+7d6+3 (avg 33) 1d10+8d6+30 (avg 63.5)
    10 +18 +36 (avg +8d6) +14 17-20/x2 1d10+8d6+3 (avg 36.5) 1d10+9d6+33 (avg 70)
    11 +18 +39 (avg +8d6+40) +15 17-20/x2 1d10+8d6+43 (avg 76.5) 1d10+9d6+81 (avg 118)
    12 +18 +41 (avg +8d6+40) +16 17-20/x2 1d10+8d6+43 (avg 76.5) 1d10+9d6+84 (avg 121)
    13 +18 +43 (avg +9d6+45) +17 17-20/x2 1d10+9d6+48 (avg 85) 1d10+10d6+92 (avg 132.5)
    14 +18 +45 (avg +9d6+45) +18/+18 17-20/x2 2d10+18d6+96 (avg 170) 2d10+20d6+190 (avg 271)
    15 +18 +47 (avg +9d6+45) +19/+19 17-20/x2 2d10+18d6+96 (avg 170) 2d10+20d6+196 (avg 277)
    16 +19 +50 (avg +9d6+54) +20/+20 17-20/x2 2d10+18d6+114 (avg 188) 2d10+20d6+222 (avg 303)


    Spoiler: What's the "w/ build changes" part about?
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    This section is about squeezing a bit more juice out of your feat slots. First, the ones you can get rid of:
    • EWP (Katana): Katanas in 3.5 are masterwork/magic bastard swords, and those count as martial weapons when wielded two-handed. Depending on how flexible your DM is, they might let this count as proficiency for Weapon Focus, and you don't need to take EWP at all. This will have you stuck wielding your sword two-handed, but that's hardly a huge problem with what else I'm mentioning here.
    • Force Of Personality: If you have other ways of shoring up your weak will save (visiting the Otyugh Hole, becoming a Necropolitan for undead immunities to lots of mental stuff, a nice item giving you a resistance bonus, etc), you can retrain Weapon Finesse to something else.
    • Warrior Instinct: This is mostly giving you an initiative bonus; if you've got allies/items boosting that high enough for your liking, you can take some other feat at lvl 6.


    Second, new feats you could take instead:
    • Power Attack: If you have faith in your accuracy (due to bonuses from allies/items), this is a great damage boost, particularly when wielding your katana two-handed.
    • Leap Attack: This enhances your PA damage bonus, which is fantastic. Only take this if you're taking Power Attack, obviously.
    • Power Attack - Iaijutsu: Despite the name, this feat has nothing to do with the PA feat above. Rather, when you roll Iaijutsu Focus for bonus damage, you gain an extra d6. I'm pretty sure this would count for Strike From The Void as well, so that's your Cha to damage an additional time at lvl 11 and beyond.


    If you make these changes to the aforementioned build (retraining Weapon Finesse to PA-I, taking PA in place of EWP, and taking Leap Attack in place of Warrior Instinct), your damage will look like the second damage column up there (presuming full PA tradoff and enough accuracy that the penalty doesn't matter).


    EDIT: Also, if you want IF a bit better at all levels, take Illiterate or Inattentive for another +1 to IF instead of one of the existing traits.

    EDIT 2: Also, while some item choices are obvious for this build (magic sword, items boosting Cha and Dex, possibly an item giving a bonus to IF so you can spend your HD 3 feat on something else), there's probably some really cool not super-well-known items that could help this build as well. If anybody has an idea for a really cool item to throw on this build, including potential custom stuff, let me know.
    Last edited by AvatarVecna; 2017-10-30 at 10:20 PM.


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